Ahmed Shehzad was himself struck by a bouncer in the first Test against New Zealand, from which he managed to recover © AFP
Ahmed Shehzad was himself struck by a bouncer in the first Test against New Zealand, from which he managed to recover © AFP

Karachi: Nov 27, 2014

Pakistan Test team opener Ahmed Shehzad has admitted that he had a lucky escape when a short-pitched ball cracked his cheekbone earlier this month and said that he froze when he heard the news of Australian batsman Phillip Hughes‘ passing on Thursday.

Hughes passed away after suffering critical injuries from a bouncer that hit him at Sydney Cricket Ground (SCG) on Tuesday. The 25-year-old South Australian batsman , who was pushing for a Test recall against India in Brisbane next week, was knocked out after the ball made impact under his helmet, behind his left ear.

The news brought an outpouring of grief on social media, with past and present players conveying their shock and passing on tributes, while many expect Hughes’ death to prompt a rethink of the safety standards in the game, The Dawn reported.

Shehzad said that he froze when he heard this tragic news and his heart went out to Hughes’ family because he has been very fortunate to be on his feet again.

Shehzad suffered a hairline fracture of his cheekbone after being hit by a short-pitched ball from New Zealand‘s Corey Anderson on November 10. He had to undergo scans after complaining of pain and dizziness and was sent home to recover, missing the remainder of the Test series.

Shehzad said that he knows how it feels that moment, adding that the day Hughes was hit he knew what his family was going through. He said that he prayed for the Australian batsman’s recovery.

Shehzad claimed that the New Zealand players were sympathetic after he was hit but added that he knows this is part of cricket and one has to endure them.

Pakistan’s cricket community was shocked at Hughes’ death, and former Test pacer Sarfaraz Nawaz revealed that Sean Abbott, the player who accidentally hit Hughes, would also need to be looked after.

Nawaz said that he just hopes that the bowler who bowled the short-pitched ball to Hughes is being given counselling because Abbot would be distraught at this moment.

Complete coverage of Phil Hughes’ tragic demise